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Mariage and Family

It's Spring

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06/01/2009 - Sitting inside my office for the last few weeks has been a difficult task. The air has been fresh, the sun has been shining, the trees have been budding out and it has been obvious that we are in the grasp of spring. This is the time when I look outside and wish I had an outdoor job where I can enjoy the new life spring seems to represent. As much as I love the winter months complete with the snow and cold I don't love the wind spring feels like we are leaving the sludge and grime and enjoying the clean and fresh.

In the previous issues we looked at the makeup of a relationship's foundation. Now is the time to bring in a fresh and new spring. No matter how long you have been in a relationship, a feeling of apathy and monotony can quickly set in. This can leave a feeling of loss. A loss of joy and excitement. The daily grind can start to feel like the long months of winter. Even when sitting on a strong foundation, finding ways to bring in the feeling of spring can keep the relationship exciting. Here are a few ideas:

Take a trip to the past. In a previous article I made the suggestion to go on a date and spend time talking about the origins of your relationship. Talk about when you met and what you saw, felt, noticed, thought and hoped for. If you have kids, let them hear your stories.

Break the daily monotony by doing something unexpected with or for each other and your family. This may mean taking some time off in the middle of work or canceling and reworking a schedule. Explore the routine of your day and if you find yourself saying, "I can't get out of this" then that may be the place to start.

Find a way to do something which may have only seemed like a dream. Whether it is a family vacation or an activity that you all desire to do, find a way to make it a realistic opportunity. This may require some strategizing but let this be fun as well.

Have a good time doing something corny and laughing at yourselves. Often we get so worried about our image that we forget to enjoy that cheesy side we all have.

Make a short term goal you, as a family, would like to achieve and start planning on how to achieve it. Think outside the box. It can be part of the dream mentioned earlier, or it may be to break some bad habits and even develop some new ones.

Come up with a new tradition for your family. This may be a fun way to celebrate spring, or the end of the school year or even a way to liven up the doldrums of winter.

Find a new passion for your family to share together. This could be a hobby or something to define your family's sense of purpose such as an act of service.

Become involved in something new as a family. This can be anything from memberships in clubs or organizations to developing new friendships with other families.

Reenact your first date to the detail you can remember. If possible, go to the same place, pick up your date at the door, bring flowers or do the same activities.

Act like a kid. Don't be afraid to go run through the sprinklers or in the rain. Jump in some puddles or go catch the newest animated movie.

Some of the suggestions do overlap each other but this is ok. The most important thing that you can do is bring some of that spark back into your relationship. It is dangerous to allow life's responsibilities to completely consume us, drowning the relationship. Enjoy each other for the gift that you are and have some fun this summer.

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